Family Y sponsors diabetes program

Published 9:42 am Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Today is American Diabetes Association Alert Day, and the Albert Lea Family Y wants residents of Albert Lea and the surrounding community to know their risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, as well as preventive steps they can take today to reduce the chances of developing the disease.

The Y knows that the best way to reduce new cases of type 2 diabetes is to prevent them and awareness is the first step to prevention. With only 10 percent of the 86 million Americans aware of their condition, Albert Lea Family Y understands that it will take everyone working together to increase this number. Albert Lea Family Y is joining Ys across the country and other national organizations committed to addressing the diabetes epidemic in an effort to help one million more Americans learn their risk for type 2 diabetes.

In the United States alone, diabetes affects nearly 29 million people and another 86 million Americans have prediabetes, yet only about 9 million are aware of it. These statistics are alarming, and the impact on the cost of health care and the overall well-being of our communities makes preventing the number of new cases of type 2 diabetes more important than ever before.

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The Albert Lea Family Y is helping people make healthier choices that can help reduce the risk of developing prediabetes or type 2 diabetes by offering the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program beginning April 13.

Some basic lifestyle changes that contribute to weight loss and an increased focus on healthy living can decrease the risk for type 2 diabetes. Among these are:

Eat fruits and vegetables every day.

Choose fish, lean meats and poultry without skin.

Aim for whole grains with every meal.

Be moderately active at least 30 minutes per day five days a week.

Choose water to drink instead of beverages with added sugar.

Speak to your doctor about your diabetes risk factors, especially if you have a family history of the disease or are overweight, said a press release.